new member - need hatchling advice

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by pepperbasket, Jun 24, 2010.

  1. pepperbasket

    pepperbasket Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 23, 2010
    Spotsylvania
    Hi - I was referred to post my message here from "incubators" so here's my first post and my 2nd. If you have any advice to share.

    Hi - first time incubator hatch project - no prior chicken experience. Chicks hatched yesterday (Tue) - 5 fluffy chicks in a brooding box. However, there is one chick struggling in the incubator. He was the first pipper on Sunday and struggled over 48 hrs. We read several sites and I "helped" him Tue night - only breaking the dried rubbery exposed membrane. He had a hole in it around his beak and had been breathing and pushing out. He "fell" out of his shell this morning (Wed). 7pm and he's still wet. Wobbly, falls to his back often. Very loud peeps. Rests, stands, moves around the incubator. No sign of drying. I put a shallow dish with fresh water and marbles in there - he has been to it several times. Can't seem to hold up his head - rests it on that dish and the other non-hatched eggs for support. I put a shallow dish with feed in there, he found it, couldn't tell if he actually ate anything but he did peck at it. He fell on his back on the saucer so I took it out.

    Questions!!!!!!!!! What can we do if anything to help him now. For some reason the incubator is having trouble holding at 100. Had no problem for 3 weeks. The water tray beneath him is full, nasty and smelly and when he rests, his beak gets in it - yuk. The incubator reeks - have to cover our faces to open it - needs to be cleaned out. Should we take him out and put him in a smaller box inside the same brooder as the others? Even if just to clean out the incubator? How long could/should he last in the incubator like this? Still wet? He's been breathing air since Sunday though stuck in the egg till this morn - shouldn't he need to drink and eat by now?

    Please advise, thanks!

    Thanks to all advice. We put him in a smaller box inside the brooding box (Wed night). Gave him a dish of water w/marbles and some feed. Swapped the lightbulb from 85 to a 100watt and the temp is steady at 92/94 in his area. Put down newspaper, paper towels, then a washcloth. He's not steady - rolls to his back and doesn't get up well, but he can. Haven't seen him get to the water yet - about 5 inches away (he's in a shoe box inside the brooder).

    Hard to watch. Does not look good - not that I really know what the stages look like for long - the others fluffed up so quickly. He is however drying - one side of him is fluffing, but the side he lays on is still wet looking. Fluff looks really ragged and thin too. His breathing is very heavy and fast too.

    Will see what he looks like tomorrow - to the one that took 2 days to hold up his head - sounds about like this guy too.

    Thanks again. I also dumped the incubator outside and gave it a vinegar rinse - too late, dark out and tired to clean tonight - but could not stand the smell any longer. Will give the other eggs a couple more days and then clean up that process.
    Online
     
  2. SkyWarrior

    SkyWarrior Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 2, 2010
    Wilds of Montana
    [​IMG]

    Sorry to hear you have a chick who isn't doing so good. [​IMG]

    I would keep it in a separate box under a heat lamp at a steady 95F. Add a bit of sugar to his water. Beyond that, I don't think you can do much. He may get better or not. Occasionally a few of the little guys don't make it. [​IMG]

    Good luck!
     
  3. pepperbasket

    pepperbasket Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 23, 2010
    Spotsylvania
    okay - now I'm in tears - this little guy is hard to watch

    about an hour ago I found the temp over 120 - one child thought he looked chilly in the 80s and put the other lamp on - UGH that breaks my heart - I can't speculate how long - maybe less than 30 min - the fluffy chicks didn't seem stressed and are still doing fine - but this sick one I think that will do him in - I instantly got him out and fanned him/therm back down

    while picking him up I realized the "wet" side of him is actually dried on stuff - if he makes it he could be washed off later

    his breathing is slower and labored, not panting like before and don't see his heart racing like it has been. I made some sugar water and used a tiny paint brush to brush some across his beak - haven't heard him peep in a while

    what/when do you do what? how could we put him out of his misery?

    earlier I tried putting a healthy chick in with him - but the chick just trompled over him so I took him out.

    he has now passed. My daughter came to tell me, it was her project. We're both sick about him. I had laid down because it was gut wrenching - from what I've read here it's a safe place to feel bad about a little chick. how do I know he's completely dead (sounds dumb I know) but I don't want to bury something still alive. the person giving the class said to "freeze" them and any unhatched eggs to be humane? is that the next step? thanks........so sad to see him but glad he's not struggling anymore.
     
  4. SkyWarrior

    SkyWarrior Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 2, 2010
    Wilds of Montana
    [​IMG]

    So sorry.
     
  5. speakup4kids

    speakup4kids Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 3, 2010
    Yuba City , CA
    I think it depends on how much you are willing to put into this chick right now. I personally don't cull weak chicks. If they end up dying I know that I have done everything I could for them and I'm good with that. I had several die on me in the middle of the night this year in the little "chick icu" that I set up next to my bed. I would wrap them up in a washcloth, in their own container with a light and feed them sugar water every hour all night long. I also had my weakest chick make it (along with several others) My weakest chick is now my biggest, and most dominant of all of the ones I've got. She is healthy, strong and I am thankful every time I see her that I gave all I had to her. That chick is the sole reason I even have chicks now! BUT, that's my personal choice...I have a good friend and colleague who does cull weak chicks and I recognize that as her decision and don't see it as wrong necessarily but her choice.
    You really need to go with what your gut tells you...

    (after all, I saved this particular chick by kangaroo care "ing" him in my cleavage so I OBVIOUSLY have no problem with what people think of me!!)
     
  6. speakup4kids

    speakup4kids Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 3, 2010
    Yuba City , CA
    I'm SO SORRY!!! I just saw your post that he had passed... [​IMG]

    You can check to make sure they are dead by seeing if he is breathing or not and (yuck) often they will have stuff come out of their vent and mouth after they die. I have not ever frozen a chick or an egg, don't know why that is more humane... they are already dead, humane for who? I would make sure to check that the chick is dead, however... my "dead" chick is in my backyard roosting in the chicken coop with two other chicks right now.

    Go cuddle up to one of your healthy little chicks and know that we have all been through the same thing and it sucks!

    It still upsets me to lose one, even though I expect it, but then again I think for some of us that's just how it is. You did awesome with that little chick and gave him the best shot he had during his short life. GOOD JOB! [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2010

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